I’ve come across artists talking about how they go back to one of their old works and create something new out of it. I’ve also come across artists who fine-tune one or more of their old works into a much better version of them. I used to wonder why anybody would go back and rework something they’ve already done when there is no shortage of things to draw inspiration from.
That is, I wondered why until I did something similar myself.
I’ve spent the last couple of days reworking some of my old works because I thought they could use some more finesse. I didn’t exactly turn them into something new, but I now understand what revisiting the past and creating something new out of that works.
Following this logic, I understand why so many people go back to places that hold sentimental value from their pasts. Not simply for the sentiment itself, but also because revisiting your past can open new doors, sometimes. Perhaps there was something that had been overlooked. Or simply because the past can serve as a reminder in a lot of situations.
When I say ‘rework’, I mean the word in every aspect, and not just art. I’ve learned, over the years, that so much of our thinking needs to change, not because our logic is flawed, but because it comes from a place of misinformation. There is always time for all of us to unlearn, relearn, and rework ourselves into better people.
I’m not saying you need to revisit your past with the intention of nitpicking and digging out your past mistakes. But there’s always a chance that there is something there that needs to be approached in a better manner. Sometimes, you need to treat your wounds from the past to heal and move on. Sometimes, you just need to accept that there were mistakes made because you didn’t know any better back then.
The point is, there is always so much scope for us to do better and be better. And why shouldn’t we work on ourselves when we’re given the chance?
Isn’t progress the whole point of it all?